The Port Enters Next Phase of Development of Former Dow Chemical Plant Site

Development partnership could bring up to 400 high paying jobs to Hamilton County


Cincinnati, OH, August 3, 2021 - The Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority (The Port) today announced it has entered into an agreement with Neyer Properties to develop the former Dow Chemical plant site in Reading, Ohio, for future manufacturing tenants. The Port acquired the 25-acre property in 2019 as part of its industrial revitalization strategy to repurpose existing land sites for new advanced manufacturing investment.

In the development agreement with Neyer Properties, The Port will initially retain ownership of the property and co-develop the site with Neyer in multiple phases. The first phase is expected to be completed by early 2023.

“The Port’s industrial strategy is to grow Hamilton County by transforming historic industrial properties to attract high paying manufacturing jobs,” said Melissa Johnson, executive vice president of The Port. “Our goal from the start of this project has been to prepare this site for a future user with the potential to bring hundreds of jobs to the region,” Johnson added.

The Port purchased the property with funding from its Patient Capital Notes social investment program. Established in 2016, The Port’s “Patient Capital Notes” investment program provides an opportunity for companies or individuals to invest in the growth of the region with returns on the investment manifesting through job creation, blight removal, and increasing tax revenue.

The Port’s specialty in industrial development is assembling land and leading complex remediation and demolition efforts to produce job-ready sites. Under its industrial strategy, The Port acquires former manufacturing facilities that are vacant or underutilized – and prepares sites to meet the needs of today’s end-users. The Port views environmental stewardship, which includes remediation and site readiness, as among the most important services it provides to the region. Since its founding, The Port has cleaned up over 250 acres and has impacted nearly 50 properties in Hamilton County through environmental cleanup and assessment.

Once developed with new manufacturing tenants occupying the former Dow Chemical site, The Port and City of Reading officials estimate the new jobs could add up to $28 million dollars in wages.

“We’re very excited to see this project move into its next phase of development,” said Robert “Bo” Bemmes, Mayor of Reading. “Since the plant’s closing seven years ago, we have worked closely with The Port, REDI, JobsOhio and Hamilton County to deliver a site-ready property for the right corporate end user. We are laser focused on bringing high paying jobs back to the City of Reading and Hamilton County,” added Mayor Bemmes.

The Port, Neyer Properties and the City of Reading are working closely with the Regional Economic Development Initiative (REDI) Cincinnati, JobsOhio and Hamilton County to secure the funding for site clean-up and infrastructure. The Port and Neyer Properties are in early discussions with the City of Reading and the Reading Community School District to consider the use of Tax Increment Financing and other incentives to support the development and attract end users.

”Neyer Properties looks forward to redeveloping the former Dow Chemical site through this public-private partnership. This site provides the unique opportunity to develop up to 350,000 square feet of manufacturing space in an urban setting central to Greater Cincinnati,” said Jeff Chamot, Director of Development for Neyer Properties. “We [Neyer Properties] have pledged an approximately $30 million investment in the construction of up to 350,000 square feet of new manufacturing space.”

Hamilton County Commissioners awarded the project $250,000 to assist with remedial expenses while The Port and Neyer Properties have been able to leverage an additional $150,000 in USEPA funding and approximately $80,000 in grants provided by The Greater Cincinnati Foundation and Procter & Gamble.

History of the site

  • Prior to closing its doors in 2014, the site, located at 2000 West Street in Reading, was owned by multiple companies.
  • The facility was originally developed in 1949 by Cincinnati Milling Machine as Carlisle Chemical Works.
  • Carlisle Chemical Works operated the facility from 1949–1970.
  • From 1970–1980, the site operated under the name Cincinnati Milacron.
  • In 1980, Carstab, a division of Thiokol, purchased the site.
  • In 1982, Morton and Thiokol merged. The facility operated as Morton-Thiokol from 1982–1989.
  • In 1989, Thiokol was sold, and Morton International operated the site for 10 years, until 1999.
  • In 1999 Rohm and Haas purchased the building and operated it until The Dow Chemical Company acquired Rohm and Haas in 2009.
  • Dow officially closed the plant in 2014 as part of a company-wide restructuring.

Each of the six companies, which collectively occupied the facility over 75 years, manufactured chemicals found in many common items, including vinyl sidings, windows, downspouts, and plastic bottles.

Site Specifics

The 25-acre lot in Reading, Ohio, a Cincinnati suburb with a population of just over 10,000 residents, provides many of the needs and amenities which large, advanced manufacturing companies look for in a production facility. Highlights include:

  • The industrial-zoned site may accommodate up to 350,000 square feet of advanced manufacturing and research and development space.
  • A labor force of more than 700,000 within a 30-minute drive of the site, with recruiting access to 17 local universities and vocational training schools.
  • Multiple transportation modes conveniently located near the site, including:
    • Three major interstate highways, including two within one mile of the site
    • Two class-A railways
    • An active Foreign Trade Zone, including the largest inland port in the United States
    • One international airport
    • The 981-mile Ohio River, stretching from Pennsylvania to its mouth on the Mississippi River in southern Illinois
  • A central U.S. location - the Cincinnati region is within one day’s drive to most major U.S. cities.
  • A globally competitive logistics industry - With DHL and the Amazon Prime Air Hub, the Cincinnati region is one of the most connected and capable places in the world for moving goods.
  • A development team ready to assist the buyer in the streamlining of permitting and approval processes.

About The Port:

The Port was formed in 2000 to stimulate growth of the regional economy. Partnering with the City of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, the Port works to redevelop manufacturing and residential communities to build the foundation of job creation and livable, viable communities where residents can experience economic prosperity. For additional information, please visit http://www.cincinnatiport.org.

Visit our social media channels:

Twitter: @CincinnatiPort

Instagram: @cincinnati_port

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CincinnatiPort/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/port-of-greater-cincinnati-development-authority/

About Neyer Properties:

Neyer Properties is a full-service commercial real estate developer specializing in sustainable land development, construction management, investment, and redevelopment. The company is actively seeking industrial, multi-family, medical and land acquisitions throughout Greater Cincinnati as well as Columbus, Indianapolis, Louisville and Lexington. Neyer Properties currently owns over 5.6 million square feet of office, industrial, retail, and multifamily space and has over 200 acres ready for development in the tristate area. Visit www.neyer1.com to learn more.

About City of Reading

Situated in the heart of Hamilton County, the City of Reading is the “Crossroads of Opportunity” for its 280 businesses and 10,380 residents. Reading’s diverse and stable business community includes prominent manufacturing companies, a 50-acre biotechnology campus, and vibrant retail establishments including the largest bridal district in the U.S. The City of Reading is committed to working with and supporting new and expanding businesses to help strengthen and diversify the local economy.

Media Assets:

Map: Site location map here

Media Contacts:

The Port:

Tom Millikin - Vice President, Communications & Marketing

(513) 632-3835

tmillikin@cincinnatiport.org

City of Reading:

Linda Fitzgerald - Economic Development Director

(513) 543-7203

lindalsrconsult@gmail.com

Neyer Properties:

Amanda Kladakis - Director of Marketing & Administration

(513) 699-8820

akladakis@neyer1.com